My brother B gave me a wonderful cookbook for Christmas and I cooked two recipes out of it so far. The first was for lunch yesterday, with a variant today (below) and the second was for dinner tonight. The cookbook is called Pintxos, Small Plates in the Basque Tradition, and the recipe name is above.
There are three steps – giant steps, that is – in the preparation of this meal, but none is a big deal, you just have to leave enough time. The first step is to make the piperade – a 10-minute saute of thin-sliced red and yellow peppers, onion, and garlic, in oil, with the magic secret ingredient of Piment d’Espelette added at the end. This is a powder of dried peppers grown only near the town of Espelette in the French Basque region. I got it today at The Spanish Table about a mile from my house.
Step two is to cook the pre-soaked cannelini beans in the piperade, with stock, dried choricero peppers (I had to substitute anchos) and smoked ham. I did the boil-1-2-mins-cover-for-an-hour soak method, and then the beans needed about 1 1/2 hours to cook nicely.
Step three is to place the beans in an oven-safe dish (recipe specifies about 5″ wide and 1″ high, which fortunately we have [close enough] in Mary Grabill pottery), make a well in the center, and crack an egg in the well, then back at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. I forgot to sprinkle with salt, pepper, and fresh parsley after cooking, but that can be dealt with when remembered.
We really liked this. Besides, it looks cool 🙂
D found a wine we bought at the Solano Cellars wine tasting in December, a Rioja, and the only Spanish wine we have in the cellar. It worked well, though not breathtakingly, with dinner.
A repeat of yesterday’s panino from the same cookbook, grilled in my cool panini press.
Changes: no more tomato and the Bowl is still closed, so I decided to put some arugula on instead. It was tasty but on the dry side. D thought adding thin-sliced onion would be good and I agree.
We also had the last of the scallion soup I made last week, and it was still great. Luxury lunch!